National Catholic Register | Court Rules Marquette University Violated Conservative Professor’s Academic Freedom

 In Case Updates, In the News, McAdams v. Marquette

National Catholic Register reports on Professor John McAdams win against Marquette University in his nationally-watched academic freedom case:

Wisconsin’s Supreme Court has come down firmly on the side of political science professor John McAdams in his dispute against Marquette University, ending a nearly four-year absence from the Jesuit campus and an acrimonious battle over academic freedom and tenure rights. 

The justices ruled 4-2 in McAdams v. Marquette that Marquette violated McAdams’ academic freedom by suspending him indefinitely, without pay, over a blog he wrote about a graduate student-teacher’s alleged suppression of a student’s opinion against “gay marriage” in a classroom discussion. The court overturned an appellate court ruling and ordered McAdams reinstated immediately and awarded damages, including back pay.

“The undisputed facts show that the university breached its contract with Dr. McAdams when it suspended him for engaging in activity protected by the contract’s guarantee of academic freedom,” concluded the decision written by Justice Daniel Kelly.

The ruling stated that Marquette violated McAdams’ academic freedom by suspending him for the Nov. 9, 2014, blog post he wrote about then-graduate student-teacher Cheryl Abbate. The court stated the blog was an “extramural comment” protected under the tenure contract.

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